The collector vehicle hobby is largely an investment of heart and soul by the average car guy.
They have an emotional attachment to the vehicle in question and want to ensure they own and/or improve the vehicle.
Cost is most certainly an object to these types of car guys so they invest what (and when) they can to ensure the well-being of the vehicle in question. The process is usually an extended one that takes place over a period of time that is largely dictated by the vintage vehicle owner’s level of expertise or financial ability to invest in his or her nostalgic dream vehicle.
The other side of the equation is an investor who purchases vintage vehicles as an investment strategy. These risk investments may not provide the same kind of return as the initial shares in companies like Facebook or Microsoft, but they offer a sizable amount of prestige to their owners.
Their largely ego-driven investments in the vintage ride market has another advantage over a traditional stock investment: these cats can drive their investments-if only from the trailer to their private collection of high end iron.
Many vintage rides have been purchased in the finest “buy low-sell high” tradition of Wall Street traders where winners and losers are decided every day in the markets.
The big question mark is an ability to use an automotive crystal ball to find the right investment when it comes to old iron. MyStarCollectorCar would like to showcase the vintage rides that are currently drawing bigger dollars at shows.
It comes as no secret that pickup trucks have become very hot in the market. Survivor trucks that are still in reasonable shape lead the way because so few of these pickups survived their days as a hard-working vehicle that was largely used up on a farm or job site.
A pickup that has been restored to its showroom glory is also a desirable investment. These restored trucks capture a time and a place in the hearts and minds of car guys-even if it was largely a romanticized image that took place in movies. A proper restoration will be expensive and the owner has to consider his investment and return if he chooses this route.
A resto mod pickup is a crap shoot because beauty is in the eye of the beholder and a custom vehicle reflects individual tastes. The price of a modified vintage truck will indeed rise if the owner has kept the basic style of the original truck and improved the pickup with a host of creature comforts found in a modern truck.
The process is expensive and requires an enormous amount of investment by the car guy who chooses this route. The return will be realized by the savvy investor who purchases the truck from the guy who spent a ton of money on it. The new owner will make even more money if the previous owner chose to run with an engine that was built by the same company that built the truck.
A reasonably sound truck investment in 2018 offers affordability for car guys. The Chevy Square Bodies (particularly the GM trucks built from 1973 until the mid-80s) are a rising star in the car hobby and would be a good choice for investment purposes.
The trucks have a nostalgic link with a younger segment of the car guy world and the earliest editions of Generation X car guys (born during the latter part of the 1960s and early 1970s) literally grew up with the Square Body trucks. Look for these trucks to become the new rock stars at shows and auctions.
Another hot commodity in the car hobby are Japanese vehicles built between the late 1960s and mid-1980s. The same Generation X segment of car guys have also driven up the price for vintage Japanese imports.
The Toyota Land Cruiser debuted in the early 1950s and evolved into the iconic style of the 1970s versions. These versions were also the first mainstream Japanese imports to move the price bump in a big way.
The Land Cruisers have been followed into the price stratosphere by many Japanese cars that range from early Datsun 510 models, the Datsun 240, 260 and 300 Z sports cars, Datsun 1600/2000 convertibles, early Toyota Celicas and the first-gen Honda Civics, among others.
The cars represent a solid cross-section of the early days of the Japanese vehicle impact on the North American automotive market. Most of these imports were economical, fun and highly disposable-so very few of them survived into the 21st century.
The Japanese imports from a bygone era have become scarce and highly desirable in a pricey way. The cars have enjoyed a steady rise in price over the past 10 years and will continue to be a hot commodity as the next generation of car guys exert their influence on the hobby.
Last but not least, continue to buy old station wagons if you have an opportunity because these rides are still a hot commodity.
BY: Jim Sutherland
Jim Sutherland is a veteran automotive writer whose work has been published by many major print and online publications. The list includes Calgary Herald, The Truth About Cars, Red Deer Advocate, RPM Magazine, Edmonton Journal, Montreal Gazette, Windsor Star, Vancouver Province, and Post Media Wheels Section.